Hangzhou: Indian shooters made India proud by winning five medals led by Palak Gulia and men’s 50m rifle 3 positions team bagging gold medals on Day 6 of the Asian Games 2023 here on Friday.
The five medals took India’s tally in shooting at the Asian Games 2023 to 18, which is India’s best performance in shooting at the Asian Games with six gold, seven silver and five bronze.
Previously, India had bagged three golds out of 14 medals at Doha Asian Games in 2016, and in Jakarta 2018, India claimed nine medals which included two golds.
The Indian shooters will also compete in trap events, and women’s skeet in the next two days.
The gold-winning Indian men’s 50m rifle 3 positions team comprises Aishwary Pratap Singh Tomar, Akhil Sheoran and Swapnil Kusale.
The Indian women’s 10m air pistol team won silver before Palak and Esha Singh claimed India’s first one-two finish in Hangzhou with gold and silver in the women’s 10m air pistol. Aishwary Pratap Singh Tomar won the individual silver in the 50m rifle 3P.
The 17-year-old Palak won the gold with a score of 242.1. She managed 577 (23x) in the qualifying round for seventh place and sneaked into the medal round. Only the top eight made it to the final.
Esha, who was the top Indian in the qualifying round at fifth place with 579 (17x), led the women’s 10m air pistol final after 10 shots but Palak followed with seven 10+ shots, including a 10.7, to take home the gold medal with an Asian Games record.
Esha settled for silver in the final with 239.7 points. Earlier at Hangzhou 2023, she won gold with the women’s 25m pistol team and silver in the individual event.
Pakistan’s Kishmala Talat was eliminated after 22 shots but secured her country’s maiden medal, a bronze, in shooting at the Asian Games with a score of 218.2. India’s Divya TS was 10th in the qualifying round with a score of 575 (10x).
However, Divya TS was also among the medals as the combined score of 1731 of the Indian trio helped them take a silver in the women’s 10m air pistol team event. China (1736) won the gold and Chinese Taipei (1723) settled for bronze.
The men’s 50m 3 rifle team position team, meanwhile, claimed gold with a world record score of 1769 — six points more than silver medallists China, who also shot through the previous record of 1761 set by the USA last year. The Republic of Korea won the bronze medal with 1748.
Swapnil and Tomar claimed the top two spots in the qualifying round with scores of 591 (33x) and 591(27x), respectively. Akhil Sheoran, who won India an Olympic quota earlier this year, finished fifth with 587 (30x) but could not progress further since only two from a country can advance to the final eight.
Swapnil was also leading the medal round during the standing eliminations but dropped to fourth after an underwhelming 7.6 and finished in the same position with a total of 438.9.
Tomar recovered from the poor start to claim silver with 459.7. China’s Linshu Du claimed the top podium with an Asian Games record of 460.6. Jiaming Tian of China won bronze with 448.3.
Shooting events at the Asian Games 2023 will conclude on October 1.